The men in the clearing look lost, far away from home knowing they will never go back. The light filters through the trees casting green shadows on the ground. It should smell clean out in the middle of nowhere, but instead there is an overwhelming stench of decay. The infected are gathered in a loose circle getting ready to set up camp. Some of their bodies can barely move, the disease has spread so far.
My father leads our team of fighters, signaling men to move around the clearing. They are silent as they tread carefully into place. We should be able to stop any of the infected from escaping as long as the men hold the perimeter.
I step next to my father. With his hand on my shoulder, he leans in next to my ear. “Lexy, there are twelve in the clearing. They may have reinforcements.” My role is to step in and draw their attention to begin fighting. If they do not attack me, we move on. They aren’t far enough gone to kill yet.
I nod and grab my katana in one hand, my knife in another. I peer through the trees assessing the situation. My first rush of adrenaline shows my anticipation for the next few minutes. A group is gathered around a small fire. The infected look tired. A few have the gray bubbles spreading up along their faces. They shouldn’t be able to fight back as quickly as the others.